Seacoast United blackbear sent 14 teams to the Coastal Summer Challenge over Father’s Day weekend. Championships were awarded to the U12 Boys, 2-0 champions over Seacoast United Mariners. U13 Girls, 3-1 winners over Seacoast United NH and U15 Girls, 3-0 winners over Clippers FC. The weather was fantastic, field conditions superb and smiles were abundant.
U10 Girls Academy Coach Randy Maietta summed up the weekend with his team message below…
Parents and Friends of Blackbear,
What a fantastic Father's Day weekend! Thank you to Seacoast United for a well-run tournament, complimented by seasonal temperatures in the low 70's (although still too cool for Mommies. Lambert, Brown, Ahola and Maietta).
Blackbear teams competed and represented the club well at all levels, with several in the competitive age brackets coming home as tournament champions (including Sydney's sister Madison's U13 team).
The Blackbear U10 girls squads finished with a very strong 6-2 record, scoring an impressive 23 goals over 8 games; and including a nail-biter against a very good Seacoast United New Hampshire team coached by Seacoast CEO Paul Willis. After the game, Mr. Willis inquired after several of our players and told me how impressed he was with the girls play and the way they competed!
Of course, for me (as a dad), the highlights were on Father's Day itself, with Aurelia scoring the game winner (and only goal of the match) in Game 1, and Aria scoring late in Game 2 to tie the score (after being down 2-1 at halftime -- Eliza and Sasha Jansujwicz then teamed up for two more to seal the game).
But anywhere you looked on either day there were great moments: Jordyn Miller's aggressiveness in goal, Mackenzie Lambert's speed, the Jansujwicz sisters never-say-die spirit, Sydney Hodgdon's courage, Grace Hamel's spatial awareness, Maddy Nuendorfer playing goalie for the U11 girls on day two, Maddie Ahola's elegant footwork, Meg Putnam's lockdown defense, the pure joy on Hailey McMahon's face after scoring, the girls unreservedly welcoming Daisy Granholm into the fold with open arms, Maya Brown firing up the troops before games with a pep-talk she borrowed from her dad! All of these and many, many more!
Perhaps the best moment, though, came at the end of Blackbear (White)'s last game on Sunday, when, down 2-1 late in the second half, tired and through injury down to one reserve, the team needed a lift. Sensing they were needed, and seemingly out of nowhere, members of team Blackbear (Blue) emerged out of the crowd to join their teammates on the bench, and with vuvuzela's blowing and chant's of "Let's go Blackbear" for a solid 15 minutes this cheering section refused to let up, seemingly willing their teammates on the field to battle on.
This was a magic moment! What mattered was not that the team on the field went on to tie and then win the game; what mattered was the spirit of generosity and camaraderie this action demonstrated. Wins and losses will come and go, but years from now the girls will remember this tournament, and that moment, as when they became a TEAM! I have never been so proud of a group I've coached.
Thank you to Seth, Billy, Dave and Ryan for their hard work and commitment; I've had a great time and I hope your kids have too!
Have a great summer, and hope to see all of you back again!
Blackbear Academy U10 Girls